Alternatives to spamgourmet

General discussion re sg.

Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby jgonggrijp » Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:35 pm

Update: see bottom of post.

original post wrote:Now that spamgourmet will be shutting down, I'm looking into alternatives. Of course, a complete spamgourmet replacement doesn't exist, but I found a few services which seem to come close:

https://e4ward.com
https://trashmail.com
https://www.burnermail.io

All three can be used free of charge, but they require payment in order to use them at the scale that spamgourmet offers.

The privacy policy is short and seems decent enough in all three, especially E4ward and TrashMail.

All three forward emails to your real email address, including attachments (I think, not 100% sure about Burner Mail), and allow you to keep the disposable addresses indefinitely (if you pay).

All three can mask your real email address when you reply to a forwarded email.

TrashMail can let you send an email from a disposable address without requiring a reply. From the documentation, it seems that you can only do this by filling in a web form, not by using your regular email client. The E4ward documentation mentions sending email from a disposable address, but doesn't explain how it works. Burner Mail might not be able to initiate new email from a disposable address.

All three let you pick from multiple domains if you pay. In the case of E4ward, that's either *.e4ward.com or "bring your own domain".

All three require you to manually create a disposable address before using it. E4ward however has a "catch-all" option.

I found these alternatives in the following lists:

https://tempmailx.com (has a handy feature summary per option)
https://alternativeto.net/software/spamgourmet/ (very long list)

If anyone has other tips, please share them here!


Update of 2019-08-25:

Since I wrote the above, I've learned some things. I'm sorting the main options by my opinion, best on top.

1. spamgourmet
Is not actually shutting down, for the time being.
Is open source so you can run your own spamgourmet. Although I should add that this is quite complicated.

2. erine.email by forum member plops
There is currently one issue with erine.email which makes me think it is not completely ready to use. I already reported this to plops and I'm hopeful that he will fix it, or that he'll accept contributions to fix it.

Issue aside, this is actually a very close match to spamgourmet. It creates addresses automatically when first receiving email on them, like spamgourmet. It also lets you send emails through erine.email by using a special email address, without requiring an email from the recipient to reply to ("first-shot"). Contrary to spamgourmet, it does not limit the number of emails that can be received on an address. For this reason, it also doesn't let you set exclusive senders for specific addresses. You can manually disable addresses in case they get compromised. I think this actually fits my usage of spamgourmet better than spamgourmet itself; I would need to manage my addresses much less in this way.

It is open source as well, so you can install your own instance and use it with your own domain name. Installation is also relatively easy. The address manager web interface is not yet included with the open source, but plops agreed to work towards including it.

The rest of the options are closed source and require payment in order to come anywhere near spamgourmet's functionality.

3. TrashMail ($22 or €19 a year to make addresses last longer than 10 emails/1 month and to first-shot)
This one works pretty well. If you don't mind manually creating every address in advance, it can be a complete-ish replacement for spamgourmet. I was also able to email with the developer, although he wasn't interested in removing the need to manually create each address. A slight concern is that the password of my (free) testing account, which I saved to a password manager, somehow became invalid after a few days. I could regain access to the account through a password reset email, however.

4. Burner Mail ($30 a year to have more than 5 addresses and to be able to reply)
It works, but when I sent a GPG-signed email to a burner address, the GPG signature became invalid. This is, however, only relevant to people who want to use GPG with their disposable email service. Like in TrashMail, you have to create addresses manually before using them. On the plus side, the developers are very approachable. The site also has a section (only visible to users) where you can submit feature requests and see the feature requests that other people already submitted, with a status (such as "planned"). Through this section, I learned that first-shot emailing from a Burner address (i.e., sending before you've received an email to reply to) is a planned feature. The developers also confirmed this by email and seemed to be planning to start on it very soon.

5. 33mail ($12 a year in order to be able to reply)
I didn't actually test this one, but it is mentioned often in this thread so I decided to study their FAQ and their pricing table.

Like spamgourmet and erine.email, it automatically creates addresses when you first receive email on them. I have the impression, however, that you cannot send email from your 33mail address unless you already received an email to reply to.

6. E4ward ($12 a year to enable the catch-all)
When sending some emails to myself and replying to them, I found that my real address was exposed in the headers of the reply email. I wanted to contact the creator about it, but the only way to do so that I could find was an online support ticket system. The ticket system required that I'd enter my name and an email address. It was not clear to me whether my email address would be published. I decided not to try it.
Last edited by jgonggrijp on Sat Aug 24, 2019 11:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby rickyromero » Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:04 pm

My wife and I did some research on this and found a couple of options, though none are drop-in replacements for Spamgourmet. :(

Except for Yahoo! Mail, all of these rely on you setting a rule to automatically delete email sent to a given address if it's sold or compromised.

  • Yahoo! Mail has throwaway addresses, vaguely similar to Gmail's, but you can deactivate them at any time and they're not tied to your Yahoo! username. You need to create these addresses first in the web interface, and there's a limit of 500. I suspect this will be a popular option.
  • Gmail has plus addressing, letting you create disposable email addresses that you can run filters against. Email sent to user+somekeyword@gmail.com will go to user@gmail.com. This fails some email validation checks I've encountered because + isn't a common email character.
  • Fastmail has the same plus addressing feature as well as subdomain addressing, which is what I've decided on. Subdomain addressing lets me run email on my own domain, and set up an alias to handle disposable email. Subdomain addressing looks like this: somekeyword@fwd.example.com
  • If you aren't afraid of running your own email server, I used a Docker setup called Mailu for a few years which works pretty well. In the admin panel, you can create a wildcard alias using SQL "LIKE" syntax, such as "%.fwd@example.com". Then you can hand out a disposable email address based on that, like "facebook.fwd@example.com". I would've gone with this approach, but I was using a service called MailRoute in front of my mail server for spam filtering, and it can't accept catch-all addresses.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby Hoco91 » Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:24 pm

I found this thread on Reddit (https://www.reddit.com/r/privacytoolsIO ... _services/) that seems to be pretty spot-on. I'll be trying Burner Mail for on-demand addresses and 33mail for on-the-fly ones. Seems to be the perfect combo.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby lwc » Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:35 pm

Thanks for this thread!

You know, so many people offered companies who can overtake Spamgourmet.
Is there any chance one of these companies - or one of the users here - just utilize Spamgourmet's open source code and turn it into a new service with possibly new features?
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby plops » Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:33 pm

I created erine.email, a service inspired by Spamgourmet.
Available As A Service at https://erine.email, or on-premise (install it on your own server) at https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/erine.email.
Free, open-source. Tel me what you think about it!
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby vikasa » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:37 am

erine.email looks great. Few questions before I consider switching

Why choose a TLD like .email? I suspect that many sites will reject it as an invalid email address

The service has been available since mid-2017. What are the availability statistics? What's the hosting infrastructure?

Is there a paid version to get more reliable service?

How many users currently use the @erine.email service, if you don't mind sharing?

Are there any alternative domains if some site/service refuses to accept @erine.email?

Is there a bulk API or script I can use to create all my @spamgourmet.com, @inboxclean.com, etc addresses to their corresponding @erine.email addresses?

Can I help in any way?

Thanks
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby lwc » Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:37 pm

I'd like to throw in my 2 cents too.
I've tried erine.email. While it's a valiant effort, why being inspired by Spamgourmet when you can just use its open source code?
erine.email basically only supports exclusive senders and not counters, which means it might not survive a large userbase.
It lets you neither use regex nor edit addresses once they're created. This means each sender remains as-is for life and if you deal with a domain like someshop.com you'll need to create a different alias for each address there (info@, service@, etc.).
I don't think there's a log of eaten messages.
I didn't go on to test the reply masking.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby vikasa » Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:22 pm

lwc wrote:when you can just use its open source code?


Yes, I wondered that too. Why did the author of erine.email re-invent the wheel when s/he could have "just" installed the SG software from SourceForge instead? I guess that would have been too easy, where's the fun in that?! :D

erine.email basically only supports exclusive senders and not counters, which means it might not survive a large userbase


Not sure I follow. By supporting only exclusive senders and not counters, the server will forward 100% of all emails it receives unless users explicitly delete an address. How does this correlate to not being able to survive a large userbase?

It lets you neither use regex nor edit addresses once they're created. This means each sender remains as-is for life and if you deal with a domain like someshop.com you'll need to create a different alias for each address there (info@, service@, etc.)


Again, not sure I follow. I have been using SG for several years and rarely needed to edit the address. I create someshop.username@spamgourmet.com when dealing with someshop.com. Why would I need different aliases for info@, service@, etc.

I don't think there's a log of eaten messages


All SG does is maintain a per-alias and global counter of eaten messages, not a log of the actual message content, right?

Looking forward to the author of erine.email engage in this discussion. I think it's a great hosted replacement for the great SG service.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby lwc » Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:41 pm

Josh mentioned many times forwarding takes lots of bandwidth while deletion is meaningless.

erine.email's address creation can only be done by sending a message to the (still non existing) alias.
If info@mystore.com sends a message, then it defines all of of it as the exclusive sender and not just what's after the @.

A meta log is better than nothing. At least I know which messages (by date, from and to) I missed.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby TuTa » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:23 pm

I have 1057 disposable email addresses over 2 accounts at spamgourmet.
I used my own domain name with spamgourmet. Thus, moving to a new service is much easier for me.

After reviewing, a number of recommended services I chose paid version of trashmail.com. Not a straight replacement of spamgourmet but does fit my needs.

Notes about trashmail.com
1 - web domain admin page does not allow to create disposable email addresses with "."
However, the 'quick' address creation form and API do allow the creation of disposable addresses with dots in the name.

If you are in a similar situation as I was, here is how I transitioned all of my >1000 disposable addresses:
1 - Create an account at https://trashmail.com/
2 - Pay for premium services (in order to be able to add custom domain)
3 - get a list of all your aliases by going to
https://www.spamgourmet.com/index.pl?my ... archterms=
4 - select all and paste to Excel
5 - using excel get the aliases before @ sign and save them to import.csv file - one alias per line
6 - check out a Python script I created that will create aliases from the file list
https://github.com/hexkDotCom/TrashMail ... ashmail.py
7 - change MX settings on your domain as suggested by trashmail
8 - validate your new settings in trashmail. Until then your domain will not be active.
10 - enjoy the new service
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby lwc » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:53 pm

Nice, but I find it hard to choose due to:
jgonggrijp wrote:TrashMail can let you send an email from a disposable address without requiring a reply. From the documentation, it seems that you can only do this by filling in a web form, not by using your regular email client.

But jgonggrijp, are you sure you can't at least reply from your mail?
If so, don't you get an address you can use later on?
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby vikasa » Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:56 pm

33mail.com looks good to me. So if I were to

    Sign up for 33mail.com Premium service ($1/month)
    Set my forwarding address to real@email.com
    Purchase a custom domain from namecheap.com called example.com (say $2-3/month)
    Setup the MX record for example.com to point to domains.33mail.com

I would be able to have unlimited disposable emails of the form alias@example.com that would get forwarded to real@email.com

Am I missing something? Is this a viable solution?
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby Gilla » Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:25 am

Trying to research the two main alternatives that make sense for what I use (spamgormet aliases of mine number 1500, though I suspect many sites don't exist anymore, or I wouldn't care to transfer):

trashmail pro ($22 a year)
5000 active email addresses limit
better interface
create aliases in browser (unlike spamgormet, so must remember to create if given out on the fly over the phone or in person to someone)
can turn on a captcha for emails received
must send email replies with web browser (inferior to spamgormet, since in that I could generate the address and then use gmail's rich html and multiple attachments to send)
(have not checked if this offers reply to address yet)
web emails are HTML editable, and can attach 1 file
address masking in reply
has server API for developers
multiple domain names for free accounts
custom domain avail
additional info headers generated in emails by trashmail
backup email server for outages
can import and export address list
can turn alias on and off
can set expiration of messages or days (including no expiration)
has whitelist individual message options (appears it can queue messages on trashmail servers until you approve, or can require sender to confirm)
has forums

spamex level 2 ($20 a year)
1000 email alias
20 meg attachment limit
interface isn't as good
create aliases in browser (unlike spamgormet, so must remember to create if given out on the fly over the phone or in person to someone)
can send email replies with web browser (inferior to spamgormet, since in that I could generate the address and then use gmail's rich html and multiple attachments to send)
But also can use Reply To address (it gets a randomized name on spamex or your customized domain which is then forwarded on)
web emails are text form and can attach 1 file.
address masking in reply
can turn alias on and off
can add custom subject to each alias (helps identify at a glance)
can set expiration of messages or days
keeps history of messages to each alias
keeps list of what email addresses sent to each alias
can set blacklist or whitelist for what addresses allowed to email to a specific alias
can't find forums for spamex, not sure if they used to exist

Although I like most things about trashmail better (for instance, HTML messaging, import/export list), what's pulling me towards spamex is the custom subject and history/whitelist options. I had problems with a kickstarter email getting a bunch of spam when someone of the multiple projects I backed started selling their email lists.
Also both are missing 1 huge features of spamgormet, the ability for aliases to be created by first email sent using it!
I wish someone would offer a service that combined all the best features together dangit!

I also highly recommend a custom domain, sadly I didn't do this when I first started with spamgourmet. That way won't have to go through changing emails on everything you've ever used again if you have a lot of aliases like me.
At the moment I'm leaning towards namecheap registrar, since they have free whois privacy, and with coupon they are under $9 a year.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby plops » Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:47 pm

Hello folks,

Thanks for your reviews and comments. I'll try to answer your questions here. Please let me know if I'm not clear or what's your opinion about those topics.

Why choose a TLD like .email?


I choose .email because I think it is the best TLD to handle an email service.

I suspect that many sites will reject it as an invalid email address


Yes, indeed. And I love to know which companies has bad developing habits ^^ Fortunately:
- erine.email "As A Service" handles .email and .eu TLD.
- erine.email "on-premise" handles as many domain names as you want. To install erine.email on your server, you just have to launch a script that installs anything for you (https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/erine.ema ... stallation). This script will ask for your domain names (https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/erine.ema ... ll.sh#L246).

[*] Before answering to the next questions, let me tell you why I'm doing this. As you can see in my "About/contact" page (https://erine.email/about), I created erine.email "to be fully aware of the issues related to such a solution, as a challenge, as a game". The idea is that I made that for myself. If you want, you can use it too. This will answer a lot of questions =)

The service has been available since mid-2017. What are the availability statistics?


The bad news is that I have no 24/7 monitoring on this service. Because:
- [*] (see above),
- In case of a reasonable downtime, emails are not lost (but the transfer is delayed),
- It would cost money and time to maintain a real production environment.

The good news is that I'm personally using this service every day, for everything. So it is critical for me. I have to keep it up and running.

The other good news is that I'm use to maintain a platform in operational conditions. I do it everyday, for millions of customers, for more than 15 years now. Backups, upgrades, automation, non-regression tests (for instance, see https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/traviata) and much more are my everyday work.

For information, the Postfix process runs since 2019-01-26. As I remembered, I rebooted the server for a kernel upgrade. No downtime since then. That was a < 1 minute downtime.

What's the hosting infrastructure?


The solution is scalable. As the platform is not that used, every "bricks" (database, Puppet Master, Postfix, Web server...) are installed on the same server, for now. Once it won't be enough, I can upgrade the server or put the most used "brick" on another server, and so on.

Is there a paid version to get more reliable service?


No, because of [*] (see above) =)

How many users currently use the @erine.email service, if you don't mind sharing?


- erine.email "As A Service": 69 users. That's a pretty tiny service ;)
- erine.email "on-premise": I have no idea, at all.

Are there any alternative domains if some site/service refuses to accept @erine.email?


Yes: erine.eu

Is there a bulk API or script I can use to create all my @spamgourmet.com, @inboxclean.com, etc addresses to their corresponding @erine.email addresses?


If you told to Amazon that your email is amazon.vikasa@spamgourmet.com, you have to change it on your Amazon account with amazon.vikasa@erine.email (or amazon.vikasa@erine.eu, up to you). You have nothing at all to do on erine.email side. The disposable email address will be automatically created once you'll receive an email.

I'm not sure if it answers your question?

Can I help in any way?


Thank you for asking! You already do with your review =) Maybe I should start to publish my "ToDo list", and a "How to contribute" section...

Why being inspired by Spamgourmet when you can just use its open source code?


- Because of [*] (see above) =)
- Because I think an on-premise installation for such a solution should be as simple as:
Code: Select all
wget https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/erine.email/raw/master/install.sh --quiet
sudo bash install.sh && rm install.sh

(https://gitlab.com/mdavranche/erine.ema ... stallation)

erine.email basically only supports exclusive senders and not counters, which means it might not survive a large userbase.


Same answer as vikasa:

Not sure I follow. By supporting only exclusive senders and not counters, the server will forward 100% of all emails it receives unless users explicitly delete an address. How does this correlate to not being able to survive a large userbase?


lwc, maybe you can help me to understand with an example?

All SG does is maintain a per-alias and global counter of eaten messages, not a log of the actual message content, right?


Yes, I can not keep that kind of information, at all. It would not be compatible with my privacy belief, and also not compliant with the european GDPR.

I think it's a great hosted replacement for the great SG service.


<3

A meta log is better than nothing. At least I know which messages (by date, from and to) I missed.


Yes, I think I can do that, indeed. What do you think about giving you access to the mail log server, only for your messages of your account? It can help you to know which messages had been sent or dropped, when, if they had been graylisted or rejected for a reason... It won't be user friendly but will give you so much information...

I hope I didn't miss questions… If so, do not hesitate to tell me.
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Re: Alternatives to spamgourmet

Postby lwc » Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:01 pm

I fear we're getting a bit off-topic. Can you open a dedicated thread for your service and I'll answer there?
You might also want to have your own forum, but I can see by your notes you might find it too time consuming.
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